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LNG consultant paid nearly $9m for three months' work

Published:Monday | January 31, 2011 | 12:00 AM
Paulwell: That is quite a hefty sum.

Describing it as "quite a hefty sum", Opposition Spokesman on Mining and Energy Phillip Paulwell has questioned the terms of reference which led the Government to be paying US$105,000 (or approximately J$8,9250,000) to an overseas consultant for its liquefied natural gas (LNG) project.

On Saturday, the Office of the Contractor General, which is the secretariat for the National Contracts Commission, released the list of approved contracts for December 2010, among them being the engagement of Ernest Megginson by the Office of the Cabinet.

Megginson has been hired to work on the country's LNG project and is being paid the US$105,000 for three months' service.

"I would love to get further details on that, especially in light of other shortcomings with the project. That is quite an hefty sum being paid over, so I would love to see what are the terms of reference," Paulwell told The Gleaner yesterday.

However, Christopher Zacca, head of the steering committee that has been set up to lead the project, says there is nothing unusual about the sum being paid to Megginson.

"This is comparable to what you would normally pay an overseas consultant," Zacca said.

- Nedburn Thaffe